Cell Culture Core Facility


Debora Esposito, PhD MBS
Director, Cell Culture Core Facility (C3F)
Tel: +1 (704) 250-5465
Fax: +1 (704) 250-5425
Email: daesposi at ncsu.edu

Plants for Human Health Institute at the NC State University houses Cell Culture Core Facility (C3F) dedicated to the assessment of gene-nutrient interactions, metabolic fluxes, hormone levels, and signaling pathways in cell culture, animal, and human research studies.

The C3F’s assay services are available to researchers from within the NC State University and throughout the world. Researchers may send samples directly to the core to be assayed on a service rate basis (see below). In addition to assay services, the C3F also serves as a training facility for faculty and students who are interested in including measures of metabolic, immune, and skin system functioning in their research. We anticipate offering training sessions each year with C3F Director and the laboratory technician.

To submit a service request by email, please include the following information: PI name, address, contact information, assays to be performed, number of samples, and how the samples were collected and processed.




The Biosafety Level 2 core is equipped with a laminar-flow hood, CO2 incubator, Zeiss Axio Observer inverted microscope, Orflo Moxi automated cell counter, multiple refrigerators (4°C), freezers (-20°C), ulta-low freezers (-80°C), and a liquid nitrogen freezer (-190°C) for long-term storage and cryopreservation.

The main lab is equipped with ABI PCR and real-time PCR thermal cyclers, BioTek Synergy H1 microplate reader (absorbance, fluorescence, and luminescence), XF-24 Seahorse Extracellular Flux Analyzer, and multiple instruments for routine nucleic acid and protein analysis, including Western blot and ELISA.


Services and Pricing


Phenotypical screening Animal and human cell culture
Glucose and lipid metabolism, inflammatory responses, and cosmetic applications
Pathway-specific gene expression
Western blot and ELISA
Cellular bioenergetics Seahorse XF-24
Mitochondrial respirations stress kit
Glycolytic respirations stress kit
Fatty acid oxidation
Animal models Metabolism and inflammation
Diet induced obesity and diabetes
Physical performance and aging
Acute and gastrointestinal inflammation


*1 The C3F core carries multiple adipocyte (white, brown), liver, muscle, macrophage, or skin cell cultures. The C3F core can accept new cell lines, please contact the C3F director with your specific needs and pricing.

*2 The C3F core is equipped to measure any biomarker for which there is a commercially-available assay kit. We can also accept/design primers for any gene of interest. Please contact the C3F director with your specific needs and pricing.

*3 Costs are based on optimal estimate of reagent usage. Batch size identifies the maximal number of samples that can be processed at a specified price.




  • How to submit my request and samples?
  •            If you are certain you would like to proceed with using the C3F services, please submit C3F service request by email. Please include the following information: PI name, address, contact information, assays to be performed, number of samples, and how the samples were collected and processed.
               In response to this email, the C3F director will provide information on: getting your samples to C3F, schedule availability, pricing, and any special instructions on processing.

  • Is C3F service right for me?
  •            Once you contact C3F, we’ll set up a time schedule for when you can expect your sample results. All samples are run at least in duplicate. The standards and quality control in the C3F are extremely high, and you can expect that your results will be precise and accurate. Additionally, while your samples are in the C3F, you can expect that they will be stored and handled with the utmost care at whichever temperature you choose. Once your samples have been successfully assayed, we can either dispose of your samples or return them to you.

  • How to incorporate C3F service in my next grant?
  •            We can provide you with descriptions of space and equipment, review the assay methods section of your grant, and suggest a budget estimate for the proposed work. Please contact the C3F director by email and provide the relevant details of your proposal.

  • What if C3F does not carry my cell line?
  •            If you are willing to share the appropriate cell culture and any non-standard reagents and/or growth factors required for its maintenance, C3F will seek a biological safety approval for a new cell line prior to performing the requested assay at no additional cost.

  • What about IACUC and IRB approvals?
  •            Please note that all researchers must have already secured their own IACUC approval if working with animals or IRB approval if working with humans.